As a 46th birthday present, it can't have been too bad.
A phone call from the other side of the world to ask whether or not you'd fancy taking on your dream job…
“I'd said 'Yes!' before Gunny had even finished asking the question, to be honest with you,” said City's new first team coach Ian Crook this afternoon.
Or rather afternoon our time; nearer midnight Sydney, Australia, time as the famed Canary playmaker fielded a phone call from Norwich's new first team manager on Sunday as Bryan Gunn started to put his A-team in place.
“It was funny, when he phoned I was sitting outside at our house and it was 32 degrees; I phoned our eldest, Sean, who was in London and I said to him what's the weather like and he said: 'It's freezing..!' And I thought: 'Uh…
“But, no, I'm really, really pleased that this opportunity has come up; again to be honest with you, I thought it was an opportunity that was going to pass me by.
“I've been out here for ten years now and I just kind of figured that it was always going to be a case of out of sight, out of mind.”
As Gunn laid out his battle plans in the midst of those 50th birthday party celebrations at the Hoste Arms on Saturday night, it was swiftly clear that an emotional return to the UK for his UEFA Cup playing pal Crook was very much at the forefront of his mind – he knew that he had to deliver the kind of backroom team that would make the board's 'mouth water' as he prepared to go head-to-head with the likes of Paul Ince and Iain Dowie for the full-time gig.
With the 4-0 win over Barnsley granting Gunn a head-start on all concerned, bolting on John Deehan as 'chief scout' and mentor took him one step nearer the 'pinnacle' of his footballing career; getting a 'You're on…' from Crook all-but secured him the job – even if, initially, it is just through to the summer.
One more piece of the jigsaw remains – the post of assistant manager has yet to be filled. Word at Carrow Road today was that a fourth member of the Class of '93 was being ear-marked for the final Colney vacancy, the pair's skipper in those heady days at Munich and Milan, Ian Butterworth.
“Gunny and I go back a long, long time,” said Crook, now expected to arrive in the country on Friday.
“I think he joined the club little more than a couple of months before I did and we've had lots of ups and downs together – mainly ups it has to be said,” said Crook. “And, of course, Dixie [Deehan] was the coach then under Mike [Walker] and went on to be manager, so I've got great respect for him.”
One charge that has been laid at Crook's door before is that he is too out of the Championship loop; too ill-versed in the ways of the second tier of English football.
“I know that Australia's a bit behind the rest of the world,” he laughed. “But we do have TVs over here now. And I've watched a lot of Championship games; I've watched the Norwich-Ipswich game. I've watched Charlton, Preston, Birmingham, Reading.
“And, you know what, football's football. Whether you're one side of the world or the other. And, besides, maybe if you live and breathe the Championship and the Football League the whole time, people can get a little fixated on one or two certain things. Who knows, maybe I can come in with a few, fresh ideas and a new perspective? Start from a clean slate.”
The fact that Australia are now one of the emerging powerhouses of the world game adds another string to his bow.
“The last time Australia played England, they beat them [3-1 at Upton Park in 2003] and they reached the last eight of the World Cup finals – there's some good players out here.”
Some of whom, ideally, might be persuaded to swap Aussie gold for Canary yellow; few others in the Football League will know where quite so many young, Australian gems are buried.
“Put it this way, I suspect I know where more of them are than Gunny or Dixie!” said Crook, whose various spells at FC Sydney and the Newcastle Jets leave him perfectly placed in terms of unearthing a new Tim Cahill or a cheaper, more user-friendly Lucas Neill.
“There are some good boys out here and the one thing you always get with them is 100 per cent commitment – that's the way they are with every professional sport out here.
“And, look, there's probably about 200 Australian players now playing in Europe. But if you ask me would they be ready to step in now, that's a difficult one.
“It's a big, big change of lifestyle moving to Europe; the change of climate – everything. Particularly for the younger boys. Maybe it takes six months or so before they really settle in, but there are some decent boys out there.”
All eyes, now, however will be fixed on next Tuesday's home clash with Southampton when B Gunn steps into the technical area as the full-time manager of the Canaries. And all with I Crook at his side; J Deehan up top in the directors' box.
If the board wanted Canary blood coursing through the management's veins, they've got that by the bucketload.
Will Crook have a little lump in his throat next week as the Canary faithful greet the return of one of their favourite sons after jetting in from the other side of the world to be at the Gunner's side?
“It'll be a little special,” he admitted. “I think the last time I walked onto the pitch at Carrow Road was in 2002 or so and the Centenary Reunion – mind you most people would say that I walked on the pitch when I played.”
They'd also tell you he lived off a diet of 20 Marlboro, flat coke and McDonalds – and could still hit a six-pence with a football from 50 yards. And find Mark Bowen with his eyes closed.
Tuesday night could prove to be one for the Canary album.
“Norwich has been a very large part of my life; both my boys were born in Norwich; so, yes, it's going to be a special occasion – just as long as those special feelings are still there after the game.”